Fantasy Football: 2017 NFL Draft Division Winners

nfl cartoon2 browns

So it is painfully obvious that this draft is chockfull of fantasy football gems, especially if you are playing in an IDP league.  And lucky for you, you need to look no further than FakePigSkin writer Bee Salamat, for IDP advice.  He really is quite good…nah great at this IDP thing.

But this advice is for those who are playing the traditional fantasy football game.  If you were paying attention and I am sure you were there are two teams that grabbed you by the balls and made you notice that they mean business for this upcoming season.

Yep, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers really do care about your fantasy football team. or their offensive output, it is the same for our purposes.  So who improved their offensive line, who drafted first day starters in the ***** positions, and who are you putting on your fantasy football draft day radar? Let’s take a look at the 2017 NFL Draft winners thus far.

Myles Garrett

(Soobum Im — USA TODAY Sports)

AFC NORTH

The winner of the AFC North (so far) is the Cleveland Browns.  Yes, you read that right. I wanted to pick the Steelers because of JuJu Smith-Schuster and James Conner who are legit. But Smith-Schuster is one piece in a crowded wide receiver corps,.  Will Conner supplant DeAngelo Williams? The Steelers are already a legit fantasy football threat, but the Browns are emerging.  Hue Jackson is looking to make your fantasy options in Cleveland a real thing.

Round 1, Pick 1, Myles Garrett, Edge, Texas A&M:  The consensus number one pick of the draft and they didn’t reach for a quarterback.

Round 1, Pick 25, Jabrill Peppers, Safety, Michigan: A freak of an athlete who will play on both sides of the ball perhaps?  So where would you fantasy draft him?

Round 2, Pick 52, DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame: He was really good in 2015.  He was less productive in 2016, but he could still outplay Cody Kessler and Brock Osweiler for the starting position.  Not putting him in my fantasy rotation just yet, but the Browns are becoming worthy of consideration.

Round 3, Pick 65, Larry Ogunjobi, Defensive Tackle, North Carolina: He is the real deal.

AFC South

The AFC South was a little closer.  Calling it for the Houston Texans right now, but the Tennessee Titans are a moving and a shaking. DeAndre Hopkins has to be jumping for joy at the possibilities of catching passes from Watson. You should be looking pass last year’s Texans and towards what they will put on the field this year.

Round 1, Pick 12, Deshaun Watson, Quarterback, Clemson: Bill O’Brien‘s offense is complicated.  But Watson is the most talented and NFL ready quarterback in the draft.

Round 2, Pick 57, Zach Cunningham, Linebacker, Vanderbilt: The rich got richer.

Round 3, Pick 89, D’Onta Foreman, Running Back, Texas: He is big.  He runs small.  And this only makes Lamar Miller a more viable fantasy option?  And why does this Watson thing feel like Dallas Cowboys redo (Dak anyone)?

Buffal Bills Tyrod Taylor

Brett Carlsen – Getty Images

AFC East

The AFC East is a hard division, mainly because everyone is chasing the New England Patriots who clearly are winning off-season without the draft.  So That being said the Buffalo Bills win for concentrating on both sides of the ball. If quarterback Tyrod Taylor stays put, do not count him out this season.  Owners should also be counting on Sammy Watkins to earn his next contract this year.

Round 1, Pick 27, Tre’Davious White, Cornerback, LSU: Can match-up with slot and outside receivers.

Round 2, Pick 37, Zay Jones, Wide Receiver, ECU: He will be the number two guy opposite Sammy Watkins.  And if the Bills don’t pick up the fifth year option on Watkins, shouldn’t that make Watkins play harder?  Two options for your fantasy football team that is worth considering.

Round 2, Pick 63, Dion Dawkins, Guard, Temple: Can start as guard or tackle.  In a week year for offensive linemen, he is one of the few that has potential to be a starter.

AFC West

Forget about a rebuilding in a new environment.  The Los Angeles Chargers are looking to put a winning team on the field now. I for one am all in on Rivers after the recent additions.

Round 1, Pick 7, Mike Williams, Wide Receiver, Clemson: Williams will make plays in the red zone or downfield.  He is an option on a team that has lots of options.  Ah, the fantasy football implications are mind altering.

Round 2, Pick 38, Forrest Lamp, Guard, Western Kentucky University: He feel to number 38 right into the laps of the Chargers.  He might just be the best lineman in the draft.

Round 3, Pick 71, Dan Feeney, Guard, Indiana: Feeney could also be a starter.  So they have upgraded their offensive line.  They added another option for Philip Rivers.  And they have four more picks.

FSU Dalvin Cook

(Mark Wallheiser-AP)

NFC North

The Minnesota Vikings only had two picks through the first three rounds, and they didn’t waste them. Sam Bradford was quietly a respectable quarterback until his offensive line crumbled before our eyes. The Vikings have found a replacement for the loss of Adrian Peterson and are looking to bolster that offensive line.  Sleepers are going to come out of Minnesota this year, just don’t you sleep on them.

Round 2, Pick 41, Dalvin Cook, Running Back, Florida State: Cook is a top ranked running back that fell due to off-field “issues”. If he can lock that up he will make the offense better.

Round 3, Pick 70, Pat Elflein, Center, Ohio State: Vikings traded up nine spots for Elflein.  He is the consensus best center in the draft, who can also play at guard.  For an offensive line that was decimated by injuries this is a good fill.

NFC South

Is is possible that the NFC South won the NFC?  It is so close Carolina got better, New Orleans got better, and even Atlanta got better.  But the Buccaneers got best. Winston….Winston and yes Winston for your fantasy football quarterback.

Round 1, Pick 19, O.J. Howard, Tight End, Alabama: So now the Buccaneers have Cameron Brate and Howard for a two-tight end set.  And oh yeah they have Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson on the outside.  How is this not winning?

Round 2, Pick 50, Justin Evans, Safety, Texans A&M: In a talented class he is good and he hits hard.

Round 3, Pick 84, Chris Godwin, Wide Receiver, Penn State: So to recap there is Evans, Jackson and now Godwin.  How are you not thinking about Jameis Winston as your fantasy quarterback?

Round 3, Pick 107, Kendell Beckwith, Linebacker, LSU: Beckwith tore his ACL in November.  So this is putting a lil sumin something away for later.

Odell Beckham Jr

Image Credit: Getty Images

NFC East

Okay, so this about offensive firepower and the New York Giants did the most to increase that side of the ball, not to mention looking for a replacement for Eli Manning. The wide receiver options are plentiful.  Not going all in on Manning yet, but his options, yes please.

Round 1, Pick 23, Evan Engram, Tight End, Ole Miss: Engram was Sports Illustrated number two tight end behind Howard. Forget the need for linebacker and offensive tackle, this is another weapon for Manning to our fantasy delight.  No running back, no problem?

Round 2, Pick 55, Dalvin Tomlinson, Defensive Tackle, Alabama: Again no offensive tackle no problem, basically because we are now counting on Manning to chuck it to  Odell Beckham Jr,, or Brandon Marshall, or Sterling Shephard, or Engram.

Round 3, Pick 87, Davis Webb, Quarterback California: Let’s just call it the Manning succession plan.  Which we are hoping makes Manning that much better this season.

NFC West

New coach, new GM and now both are winning the draft.  First they bamboozled the Chicago Bears into trading up one position and giving away three picks.  Then they went about business. I know this is about traditional fantasy and the 49ers did nothing to help that side of the ball.  They are still without a viable quarterback.  Okay so this is all about the bamboozling of the Bears and an unhealthy belief in Kyle Shanahan?

Round 1, Pick 3, Solomon Thomas, Edge, Stanford: This allows 49ers flexibility up front.  But more important it added three extra picks and still got their man.

Round 1, Pick 31, Reuben Foster, Linebacker, Alabama: If he is healthy this may be one of the steals of the draft.

Round 3, Pick 66, Ahkello Witherspoon, Cornerback, Colorado: The 49ers have impacted all three levels of their defense.

Did the Seahawks bolster that shaky offensive line?  Did the Rams get another quarterback.  And what about Carson Palmer?  The NFC West is where you are going for your IDP options.

It is going to be a great fantasy football year.  Stay tuned.

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